Brexit: opposition and rebels submit application to stop no-deal – live news
Parliament to resume after summer recess amid Boris Johnson threat to call snap election
- Johnson: back me or face election
- Hammond preparing for political ‘fight of a lifetime’
- Brussels baffled by Johnson’s Brexit progress claims
- Greening to quit as Tory MP at next election
These are from my colleague Severin Carrell, who has been covering the legal challenge in Edinburgh to the government’s decision to prorogue parliament for five weeks from next week.
Aidan O’Neill QC accuses @GOVUK of treating #courtofsession with “certain degree of contempt” by ignoring court timetable in lodging very late new papers which were also heavily redacted at 10.55pm last night #stopBoris
O’Neill says @GOVUK has refused to lodge govt affidavits to #courtofsession but has filed a copy of one for the Miller case in London, in such a way the witness can’t be properly tested under oath in Edinburgh #stopBoris
O’Neill accuses @UKGOV of deliberately concealing and misleading court over Boris Johnson’s secret decision on 15 August to prorogue. But @UKGOV lawyer had told at the time prorogation challenge was “hypothetical, academic and premature” #stopBoris
David Johnston QC for @GOVUK apologises to court for late note of arguments; blames “fast moving political situation” and “controversial” issues. Lord Doherty chastises UK gov: says dely regrettable but allows them to be admitted #stopBoris
O’Neill cites Boris Johnson stating in private memo: Commons action to stop Brexit “simply a rigmarole for MPs to show that they’re earning their crust”. The PM took the decision on his own, and just told the Cabinet it was happening #StopBoris
#stopBoris case hears Johnson wrote a note to Nikki Da Costa on 16 August saying: “Whole September session [at Westminster] is a rigmarole introduced to show the public that MPs are earning their crust. I don’t see anything especially shocking about this prorogation” 1/2
In other words, the PM had decided in secret to suspend parliament a full 12 days before privy council asked the Queen to prorogue.
On 15 August Da Costa had told Johnson Commons should be prorogued in week of 9 Sept; her memo went to Mark Sedwill, the Cab secretary, Ed Lister, chief of staff, Dominic Cummings and others. Johnson ticked the memo and wrote “yes” #courtofsession #stopBoris
Aidan O’Neill accuses Boris Johnson of “incontinent mendacity… an unwillingness to acknowledge and speak the truth. He has chosen not to be accountable to this court and seeks not to be accountable to parliament” #stopBoris #courtofsession
Downing Street has described the Benn bill as a “blueprint for legislative purgatory”. The PM’s spokesman said it would cost “vast amounts”, with roughly £1bn a month paid to the EU for an extension, and was “very clearly in Brussels’ interests not in the British interest”. He said:
The prime minister’s mood is determined. He wants to get on with delivering on the result of the referendum and the UK leaving the EU on 31 October, ideally with a deal.
We are opposed to the bill which is being brought forward because it is about crippling negotiations and chopping the legs out from under the UK position, and making any further negotiation impossible.